The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Jan. 21 waived a limitation on selling gasoline that contains more than 10 percent ethanol for model year (MY) 2001 through 2006 passenger vehicles, including cars, SUVs and light pickup trucks. The waiver applies to fuel that contains up to 15-percent ethanol, known as E15.
EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson said she made the decision after a review of Department of Energy tests and other available data on E15's effect on emissions from MY 2001-2006 cars and light trucks.
"Recently completed testing and data analysis show that E15 does not harm emissions-control equipment in newer cars and light trucks," according to Jackson.
In October 2010, EPA approved a waiver allowing the use of E15 for MY 2007 and newer cars and light trucks. At that time, EPA denied a request to allow the use of E15 for MY 2000 and older vehicles and postponed its decision on the use of E15 in MY 2001 to 2006 cars and light trucks until DOE completed additional testing for those model years.
The agency also announced that no waiver is being granted this year for E15 use in any motorcycles, heavy-duty vehicles or non-road engines because current testing data does not support such a waiver.